Guatemala Culinary Exploration

  • Trip Type
  • Culinary
  • Length
  • 8 Days / 7 Nights
  • When to Go
  • Year-Round

  • Let the flavors of Guatemala guide you

    Send your taste buds into overdrive – savory chiles rellenos, spicy chicken pepian and traditional Mayan Kak’ik – with a food-fueled journey through Guatemala’s culinary hotspots. From the colonial city of Antigua where street food and chocolate reign supreme, to the Mayan highlands where coffee will tantalize your tongue, you’ll savor the spices, sauces and seasonings that lead to the country’s bold tastes and intoxicating aromas. Peruse local markets where chefs and restauranteurs gather their ingredients, stroll through medicinal gardens, and visit street food vendors to nosh on elote, tacos and tostadas before you try your hand in the kitchen, whipping up your very own 4-course feast. Buen provecho!

    Trip Highlights

    charming colonial cities & serene lakefront views • street food & historical walking tour in Antigua • macadamia farm tour • coffee tour & tasting • chocolate truffle workshop • Chichicastenango market • Mayan cooking class • Gallo beer factory tour

    Full Package per person from:

    $1,600.00 low season (May - Oct)
    $1,850.00 high season (Nov - Apr)
    Prices vary based on departure season.

    Click a day for more details.

    • Day 1: Guatemala City to Antigua - Arrival

      Upon arrival to Guatemala City, you’ll be met by your driver who will take you on a 30-minute journey out of the bustling city to Antigua, an iconic colonial town nestled in a valley surrounded by volcanoes. A destination unmissable to the culturally curious, Antigua is the perfect jumping off point from which to begin your exploration of Guatemala. Check in to the luxurious El Convento Hotel, and settle in for a relaxing evening to wrap up a long travel day.

    • Day 2: Antigua - Walk the cobblestone streets of Antigua and learn about the city's rich colonial history; get acquainted with Guatemalan cuisine and sample street food and Guatemalan delicacies with a local chef

      Get your bearings today on a private walking tour of the city. Meander your way through labyrinth cobblestone streets, passing through fascinating and majestic ruins of convents and churches, and catching an authentic glimpse of modern Guatemalan culture as you uncover secrets of Antigua’s ancient past.

      In the afternoon, discover the city’s vibrant market and culinary scene, on a tasting safari of the best street foot Antigua has to offer – from street carts to a famous sweet shop to secret, family-run eateries rarely visited by tourists. Make sure to come hungry!

    • Day 3: Antigua - Head into the mountains to discover how macadamias are farmed, then learn the art of handcrafted chocolate truffles at Antigua's famous Choco Museo

      Today, discover two of Guatemala’s biggest exports – coffee and cacao. Your route for the day will take you out of the city and into the rolling hills to a macadamia farm. Sample macadamia nuts, chocolates and skincare products, and learn about the cultivation and processing of the nuts to prepare them for export, before indulging in the farm’s legendary macadamia pancakes, made with macadamia flour and served with blueberry jam.

      After lunch, join a technical workshop with a local chocolatier to learn advanced chocolate techniques, including ganache and shelled bonbons, and handcraft your own array of truffles and shelled bonbons to take home as a souvenir.

    • Day 4: Antigua to Lake Atitlán - Visit the largest outdoor market in the Americas to peruse vibrant stalls of Mayan textiles, pottery and artwork, and rows upon rows of exotic, organic produce farmed in the nearby mountains

      After a hearty breakfast, your adventure begins with a private transfer to the colorful open-air market of Chichicastenango for a truly authentic glimpse of daily life in the Maya highlands. Every Thursday and Sunday, local vendors from all over the region make their way to Chichicastenango to hawk their wares – anything from fruit and vegetables to flowers, pottery and even livestock – and local families visit their favorite vendors to gather ingredients and goods for the week.

      Spend a couple of hours perusing the market stalls, then visit the cathedral of Santo Tomás, built in 1540 atop the foundation of a pre-Hispanic temple. Finally, enjoy a delicious local lunch in the market center before head back to Antigua, riding through rolling hills as the sunset bathes the landscape in a dusky pink light.

    • Day 5: Lake Atitlán - Relax in lakeside paradise

      Today, revel in lakeside bliss and serene volcanic views from Casa Palopó. Gone are the tuk-tuks whizzing by and the market vendors hawking their wares; instead, a gentle breeze and quiet lapping of waves. Catch some rays poolside, sip a tasty cocktail at the martini bar, or gear down into vacation mode with a delectable massage to melt all your stresses away.

    • Day 6: Lake Atitlán - Cook Guatemalan specialties; tour an organic, fair-trade coffee farm to follow the journey of coffee from bean to cup

      After an evening spent beneath the stars on Casa Palopó’s panoramic terrace, this morning you’ll set out on a boat ride to San Pedro, where a tuk-tuk will pick you up at the port and transport you to a fair-trade coffee farm in San Juan – a must for coffee connoisseurs visiting Guatemala. Discover the plant nursery, and learn about the different coffee varietals, farming techniques and gourmet coffee exports, while you visit the farm, and walk through the processing plant where beans are sorted, dried and roasted. Finish with a cupping and tasting session of the farm’s premium roast.

      Next, head to a cozy hilltop kitchen patio overlooking the lake, where you’ll embark on a journey through traditional Mayan cuisine. Start with a trip to the market to buy ingredients and meet local vendors, before you make your way into the kitchen to get cooking. Learn traditional Mayan techniques, try your hand at forming tortillas, prepare three traditional dishes, and then sit down with your host to enjoy the fruits of your labor.

    • Day 7: Lake Atitlán to Guatemala City - Return to Guatemala City and spend your afternoon at the country's most popular brewery, home to Gallo Cerveza

      Spend your last morning at Casa Palopó relaxing, before setting off on your final boat ride to Panajachel. Take a two and a half hour transfer through the lush, green hills back to Guatemala City, where you'll pay a visit to the brewery where Gallo beer - Guatemala's national pride and joy - is brewed. Check into Real Intercontinental Guatemala City for a restful final night in Guatemala.

    • Day 8: Guatemala City - Departure

      Transfer to the international airport three hours before your flight home. Adios!

    Click hotel image for details.

    What's Included?

    We'll give you everything you need, everything you want, and a few little surprises to make your trip extra special. We've got you covered, from start to finish. Unique, unforgettable destinations; private tours with local experts; authentic local cuisine; lessons, demonstrations and new cultural insights; more adventure than you can handle; perfect romantic touches; blissful relaxation; and a feeling of total freedom. We take care of everything so that you can enjoy an unparalleled, hassle-free journey without worrying about a thing.

    • Airport pickup

    • All hotel accommodation

    • Meals as indicated

    • Detailed maps and trip preparation guide

    • All special events and tours

    • All vehicle and regional air transportation from rendezvous to drop-off

    • All baggage transportation

    • All gratuities for baggage, porters and hotel service

    Stay Longer

    If our off-the-shelf itinerary is almost a perfect fit, but just doesn’t feel long enough, extend your stay to make it the best vacation possible. Spend a few days in the region before or after – we can customize any trip, and no ask is too big!

    Let us know what you have in mind using the contact form below, and we’ll get in touch to create your perfect travel experience.

    Know Before You Go

    • Itinerary prices are dependent on season of departure. Christmas, New Years and Easter (Semana Santa) are peak season, and prices during these periods are significantlky higher than other times of year. High season runs from November through April, and green season from May through September.

    • Arrival: hotel check-in times are at 3:00pm, but you may arrive at any time during the day. If you arrive prior to the scheduled check-in time, we will arrange for early check-in wherever possible.

    • Departure: hotel check-out times are at 9:00am. International flights on your departure day should be arranged to depart after 1:30pm.

    • All prices in USD.

    • For vaccination recommendations, please visit the CDC website.

    • For American, Canadian, and British citizens, a valid passport with 6+ months remaining is required for entry to Guatemala.

    • Debit cards may not work in Central America, but most establishments accept major credit cards.

    • Please ensure you have immediate access to a minimum of USD $250 as an emergency fund to be used if circumstances outside our control (e.g. a natural disaster) require changes to your planned route.

    • If departing Guatemala by air, most major airlines include exit taxes in the price of your airfare; if not, the airline agent will let you know payment is required upon check in (USD $30, payable in quetzales or dollars).

    • It is customary to tip service providers (waiters) around 10% depending on service. Tipping taxi drivers is not required.

    • Gratuities for guides and drivers are deeply appreciated, and provide an important supplement to their income. If you are pleased with the tour services you've received, a guideline for tipping in Central America is USD $8-10 per person per day for multiple-day tours, or USD $5-10 per person for day tours.

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    Getting There

    From North America: several airlines offer direct and connecting flights to Guatemala’s main international airport: La Aurora International Airport in Guatemala City (airport code: GUA). There is a secondary international airport that services Flores and Santa Elena in Guatemala's northern region, but unless you are connecting with Belize, it is unlikely you will arrive or depart from this airport. Including connection time, flights from the USA typically range from 2.5-9 hours in duration, while most flights from Canada range from 9-15 hours in duration.

    From the UK: there are currently no direct flights to Guatemala from the UK, but there are several flight options connecting in the United States and/or Canada. Including connection time, flights from the UK typically range from 12-18 hours in duration.

    When you arrive in GUA, there will be an airport transfer waiting to take you to your first destination. If you have questions about flights, or require assistance booking, please contact us here. We're here to help!

    Ready to book, or just want to get more information? Let's get started! Fill out the form below, and we will send you a no-obligation quote.

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